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What are the advantages of registration of marriage?

Here are the advantages of registering marriages:

(i) Certificate of marriage is a document, which provides valuable evidence of marriage;

(ii) Certificate of marriage is a document providing social security;

(iii) Certificate of marriage helps couples to travel abroad on a spouse visa, and a marriage certificate is obligatory when applying for a residency in a different country.

(iv) For couples who plan to buy a joint property or apply for a home loan, a marriage certificate is one of the mandatory documents required by a bank or lending authority.

(v) It will be helpful in claiming the Bank deposits or Life Insurance benefits when the depositee or the Insurer dies without a nomination or otherwise.

Other benefits:

(a) prevention of child marriages and to ensure minimum age of marriage.

(b) prevention of marriages without the consent of the parties.

(c) Check illegal bigamy/polygamy

(d) Enabling married women to claim their right to live in the matrimonial house, maintenance, etc.

(e) Enabling widows to claim their inheritance rights and other benefits and privileges which they are entitled to after the death of their husband.

(f) Deterring men from deserting women after marriage.

(g) Deterring parents/guardians from selling daughters/young girls to any person including a foreigner, under the garb of marriage.”

What are the laws under which marriages are registered in Sub Registry or District Registrar Offices?

Marriages are registered under the following Acts:

1. Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 – The Hindu Marriage Act enables the State Government to make rules with regard to the registration of marriages.

2. Special Marriage Act, 1954

3. Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936

4. Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872

5. In Goa, the Law of Marriages

6. The Foreign Marriage Act, 1969

3.  How can we register the marriage in Bangalore for Sikh, Hindu, Buddhist and Jain couples? How many days will the process take to complete?

The Hindu Marriage Act is applicable in cases where both husband and wife are Hindus, Buddhists, Jains or Sikhs, or where they have converted into any of these religions. The first step in this marriage registration process is to apply to the sub-registrar under whose jurisdiction the marriage has been solemnized, or either party to the marriage has been residing.

Documents to carry along:

Application form duly signed by both husband and wife.

Documentary evidence of the date of birth of parties (Matriculation Certificate / Passport / Birth Certificate) minimum age of both parties is 21 years at the time of registration under the Special Marriage Act.

Ration card of husband or wife whose area SDM has been approached for the certificate.

In the case of Special Marriage Act, documentary evidence regarding stay in Delhi of the parties for more than 30 days (ration card or report from the concerned SHO).

Affidavit by both the parties stating place and date of marriage, date of birth, marital status at the time of marriage and nationality.

Two passport size photographs of both the parties and one marriage photograph.

Marriage invitation card, if available.

If marriage was solemnized in a religious place, a certificate from the priest is required who solemnized the marriage.

Rs. 100/- in case of Hindu Marriage Act and Rs.150/- in case of Special Marriage Act to be deposited with the cashier of district and the receipt should be attached with the application form.

Affirmation that the parties are not related to each other within the prohibited degree of relationship as per Hindu Marriage Act or Special Marriage Act as the case may be.

Attested copy of divorce decree/order in case of a divorcee and death certificate of spouse in case of widow/widower.

In case one of the parties belong to other than Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Sikh religions, a conversion certificate from the priest who solemnized the marriage(in the case of Hindu Marriage Act).

Verification of all the documents is done on the date of application and a day is fixed and communicated to the parties for registration. On the appointed day, both parties, along with a Gazetted Officer who attended their marriage, need to be present before the Sub Divisional Magistrate. The certificate is issued on the same day. If no objection for the marriage is received within 30 days from the notice, marriage will be registered.

For the Hindus, Jains, Buddhists, and Sikhs marrying within these four communities, the Special Marriage Act 1954 is an alternative to the Hindu Marriage Act 1955. Both parties are required to be present after the submission of documents for issuance of public notice inviting objections. One copy of the notice is pasted on the notice board of the office and a copy of the notice and is sent by registered post to both parties as per the given address. Registration is done 30 days after the date of notice after deciding any objection that may have been received during that period by the SDM. Both parties along with three witnesses are required to be present on the date of registration.

How do we register the marriage in Bangalore for Christian and Muslim couples? How many days will the process take to complete?

The Kazi who has performed the marriage can issue a ‘Nikahnama’ which is a marriage certificate.  For legal reasons, such as passport, bank account opening, inheritance, consent in case of emergency, etc., it is advisable that the Muslim marriage should be registered with the marriage registrar. Muslim marriages can be registered under the State Marriage Registration Act of the state where it was solemnized. In Bangalore, the Karnataka Marriages Act, 1976, applies.

The parties to a marriage shall, prepare and sign a memorandum deliver it in duplicate to the Registrar or the area in which the marriage was contracted, within a period of thirty days from the date of marriage. The memorandum is to be attested by a prescribed person. The memorandum can be accessed here. Along with this, the prescribed fee in the form of court fee stamps should be paid. The Registrar then files the memorandum, enter the particulars thereof in the register, send the duplicate copy thereof to the Registrar General and issue a marriage certificate.

Registration could also be done under the Special Marriage Act. It may take up to 30 days.

As for Christians, the Christian Marriage Act specifies the registration procedure. The following conditions have to be complied with for the performance of the marriage by the Marriage Registrar appointed under the Act. They are as follows:

Notice of Intended Marriage: A written application or notice is made by either party to the marriage residing in the same area to the Marriage Registrar to notify the concerned authority of their intention to get married. In case both the parties reside in different areas, each party would have to make a separate notice in writing to the Marriage Registrar located within their areas of residence.

Pledge Before Registrar: Before the certificate of notice has been issued, either one party to the marriage should make a personal appearance before the Marriage Registrar, pledging that there is no obstacle to marriage, that the place of residence is within the locale of the marriage registrar, etc.

Once the pledge has been taken before the registrar by either one of the parties to the marriage and a time limit of four days have lapsed after the notice of intended marriage has been received, the Registrar has the power to issue the Certificate of Notice. The information contained in the Certificate of Notice pertains to the location of the Church or Chapel, where the marriage rituals are expected to be performed.

An application for registration of the marriage is made by both the party to the concerned authority in whose jurisdiction either of the parties has been residing. The wedding is registered by the Marriage Registrar who was present at the marriage and performed the union of the couple in the Marriage Register. An acknowledgement slip of the registration with the authorised signatory of both the parties along with the witnesses present at the time is recorded. This is then attached to the Marriage Register and thereby indicating that the marriage was registered officially. These slips of acknowledgement are sent out at the end of the month to the Registrar General of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

Documents required:

Complete application form;

Passport Size photographs,

The Marriage Certificate issued by the Minister or the Priest who performed the wedding,

Two photographs of the wedding rituals along with the wedding invite;

Residence and age proof of either party to the marriage;

An affidavit certifying the mental and marital status of both parties.

Where the marriages are to be registered?

1. Marriages under Hindu Marriage Act can be registered in the office of the Registrar of Marriage within the jurisdiction of which the marriage has taken place or in the office of Marriage Officer in whose jurisdiction the bride or bride-groom resides;

2. Marriage under Special Marriage Act and Foreign Marriage Act can be registered in the office of the Marriage Officer in whose jurisdiction bride or bridegroom resides;

3. Marriage under Parsi Marriage Act may be registered in the Office of the District Registrar in whose jurisdiction the marriage takes place.

4. Under the Christian Marriage Act, at the office of any Marriage Registrar of the district within which the parties have dwelt.

Where is the Office of the Marriage situated and who is the Marriage Officer?

The Sub Registrar who registers documents relating to immovable property is also the Marriage Officer. The offices are usually located in Taluk headquarters, or the District headquarters, or in a few places in the hobli[1] headquarters.

To access the marriage office(s) near you, please visit this website and enter details like the district you reside in, the village/hobli name, etc.

In Bangalore city Office of the Marriages/Registrar of Marriages is located in different places. District Registrars are Registrars of Marriages under the Parsi and Christian Marriage Acts and their Offices are situated in all District Headquarters.

When can we not visit the Registrar’s office?

Registrar office timings: (Mon-Fri 10:30 to 5:30, Sat 10:30-1:30). The office remains closed on Sundays and on National holidays, and on certain saturdays.

To whom does Hindu Marriage Act 1955 apply?

Section 2 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 talks about the applicability of the HMA. It applies to Hindu by religion in any of its forms, including a Virashaiva, a Lingayat or a follower of the Brahmo, Prarthana or Arya Samaj, Buddhist, Brahma, Jainas, Sikhs. It also applies to any other person domiciled in the territories to which this Act extends who is not a Muslim, Christian, Parsi or Jew by religion, unless it is proved that any such person would not have been governed by the Hindu law.

To whom does Special Marriage Act 1954 apply?

It applies to all irrespective of religion, caste, language. It is religion-agnostic.

To whom does Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936 apply?

It applies to Parsi Zoroastrians.

What should be the age of bridegroom and bride at the time of marriage?

The bridegroom must have completed 21 years age and bride must have completed 18 years.

Are there any restrictions for registration of marriages?

Following are the restrictions under Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and Special Marriage Act, 1954:

1.1(a) The bridegroom or bride who desire to marry should not have another marriage in existence;

(b) Bridegroom or bride who cannot voluntarily give consent for marriages owing to mental illness are not eligible for marriage;

(c) Marriage of those who are capable of giving consent for marriage but incapable of getting child owing to unsound mind cannot be solemnised nor be registered;

(d) Those suffering from insanity are ineligible for solemnisation of marriage;

(e) Those who are within the degrees of prohibited relationship are ineligible for marriage. However, they can marry if it is permitted according to the usage of custom or usage governing such persons;

1.2. Bridegroom and bride who are descendants up to 5 generations from mother’s side or father’s side cannot marry (They are called Sapindas).

Restrictions under Parsi Marriage Act 1936 are as follows:

Bride and Bridegroom should not be related within the degrees of prohibited relationship mentioned in the Act, and neither of them should have an existing ceremony. For a valid marriage, the marriage should go through the Ashirvad Ceremony, the age requirements as mentioned earlier must be complied with.

Restrictions under Christian Marriage Act

According to the act, a marriage is legitimate if at least one of the parties is Christian. The marriage is legitimate only under the following conditions:

The agreement between the two parties must be free and voluntary and without compulsion, undue influence, or threat of violence.

The marriage must be witnessed by two reliable eye-witnesses and by a licensed marriage performer.

How to register a Parsi marriage in Bangalore?

Every Parsi marriage under the Parsi Marriage Act shall, immediately on the solemnization thereof, be certified by the officiating priest. The certificate shall be signed by the said priest, the contracting parties and two witnesses present at the marriage; and the said priest shall thereupon send such certificate to the Registrar of the place at which such marriage is solemnized, with a fee. The Registrar on receipt of the certificate and fee shall enter the certificate in a register to be kept by him. He will obtain signature of the bridegroom and bride and two witnesses present at the time of marriage in prescribed form and issue certificate of marriage. This certificate will be sent to the Registrar of Marriage (District Registrar) along with prescribed fee. Registrar of marriage will record in the prescribed register.

What is the step by step process?

Following is the marriage registration procedure in Bangalore :

Get a marriage registration form which can be easily downloaded from the government website of Karnataka or you can collect it from the court itself.

You need to get an affidavit made which can be made near the court or near the registrar’s office itself.

You will have to submit the form and the affidavit along with a formal application requesting the registration of your marriage.

Once that is done, you will have to make a request for physically appearing before the marriage registrar on a particular date decided by him as per the schedule.

Once the Officer has duly verified your submissions and considered it valid, you shall be called to the office to register the marriage officially on papers. Both the parties shall require two witnesses each.

Once the registration of the marriage is duly completed, the certificate validating the same will be issued to you within the prescribed period of time.

What is the time limit for registration of marriage?

Marriage under Hindu or Parsi Marriage Act can be registered at any time after marriage. There is no time limit.

What all documents are required as proofs?

Date of Birth proof certificates like SSC marks memo, copies of passport, residential proof should be presented to the Registrar of Marriage.

Wedding invitation card.

The marriage certificate which is given by the priest where the marriage took place (if it has been solemnised).

Documents mandatory for the evidence of the address. The same address must be provided which has been provided to the SDM for the marriage certificate.

Joint picture of the couple (3*2)

A wedding picture

2 passport-size pictures

Attested printed a copy of the death certificate of the ex-spouse if he or she is dead.

Attested printed copy of the divorce order if anyone or both the parties are divorced.

A photograph and ID card each for 3 witnesses.

Is it possible to solemnize marriage under Special Marriage Act in place other than that of office of Marriage Officer?

The marriage may be solemnized at such place within reasonable distance as the parties may desire upon payment of such additional fees as may be prescribed.

Can the marriage already held according to the religious custom be registered under Special Marriage Act? If so how to get it registered?

Yes, a couple, who has already performed the religious rituals of their marriage and are applying to register later, will also fall under the Special Marriage Act as per Section 15.

An Application duly filled in should be given in prescribed form in duplicate along with prescribed fee to the marriage officer. If there are no objections marriage officer will register the marriage after 30 days if the husband and wife appear along with 3 witnesses subject to following conditions:

They should have married and must be living together since then;

At the time of marriage any of them should not have more than one living wife or husband;

Any of them should not be an idiot or lunatic at the time of registration of marriage;

Husband and wife should have completed the age of 21. They should not be within the degree of prohibited relationship described in schedule I of the Act;

Husband and wife should have lived for a period not less than 30 days within the jurisdiction of marriage officer.

What are the objections to refuse registration of marriage? Is there provision to appeal if registration is refused? If so to who does the appeal lie?

Under the Special Marriage Act, the objections raised could be:

(a) That either party has a spouse living:

(b) that either party-

(i) is incapable of giving a valid consent to it in consequence of unsoundness of mind

(ii) has been suffering from mental disorder rendering him/her unfit for marriage and the procreation of children; or

(iii) has been subject to recurrent attacks of insanity or epilepsy;

(c) the male has not completed the age of twenty-one years and/or the female is under eighteen years;

(d) the parties are related within the degrees of prohibited relationship:

Under the Special Marriage Act, any person aggrieved by any order of a Marriage Officer refusing to register a marriage may, within thirty days from the date of order, appeal against that order to the District Court within the local limits of whose jurisdiction the Marriage Officer has his office. The decision of the District Court on such appeal shall be final.

What is the fee to be paid for registration of marriage?

No fee is prescribed for registration of marriage under Hindu Marriage Act. Fee for application is Rs.5 and fee for certified copy is Rs.10.

Under Special Marriage Act, fee for solemnization of marriage is Rs.10, Rs.15 extra for solemnization in place other than the office. Fee for notice of intended marriage is Rs 3. Fee for certified copy of certificate of marriage is Rs.2

Under Parsi Marriage Act, fee for certified copy of certificate of marriage is Rs.2.

Under the Christian Marriage Act, the Application fees, Search and Copy fees are around Rs.5-10.

How to register marriage in Bangalore for couples seeking Court Marriage?

Court marriages are solemnized under the Special Marriage Act, 1954.

Procedure:

The parties have to file a Notice of Intended Marriage in the specified form to the Marriage Registrar of the district in which at least one of the parties to the marriage has resided for a period of not less than 30 days immediately preceding the date on which such notice is given.

The notice is then published/put-up by the Registrar of Marriage inviting objections, if any.

After the expiration of 30 days from the date on which notice of intended marriage has been published, the marriage may be solemnized unless it has been objected by any person.

The marriage may be solemnized at the specified Marriage Office.

Both parties along with three witnesses are required to be present on the date of registration/Solemnization.

What are the essential conditions for court marriage?

There should not be subsisting valid marriage of either of the parties with any other person.

The bridegroom should be of twenty-one (21) years and bride should be of eighteen (18) years of age.

The parties should not be of unsoundness of mind of such a nature as to be unable to give valid consent for the marriage, or suffering from mental disorder of such a kind or to such an extent as to be unfit for marriage and procreation of children, or has been subject to recurrent attacks of insanity.

The parties should not fall within the degree of prohibited relationship.

What are the documents required for court marriage when both parties are Hindus?

Documents required:

Application form in the prescribed format with the prescribed fee

Passport Size Photographs of Marrying Persons

Residential Proof of Marrying Persons.

Date of Birth Proof of Marrying Persons.

Residential Proof and PAN Card of Three Witnesses

Death certificate or divorce decree whichever is applicable, in case one of the parties had any marriages in the past.

How is a marriage registered when both the parties belong to different religions? What are the documents required? What is the procedure?

The marriage performed under the Special Marriage Act, 1954 is a civil contract and accordingly, there need be no rites or ceremonial requirements. Where either of the husband or wife or both are not Hindus, Buddhists, Jains or Sikhs, the marriage is solemnized and registered irrespective of the religion, under the Special Marriage Act, 1954.

Documents required:

Application form duly signed by both the parties.

Documentary evidence of the date of birth of parties.

Residential proof of both the parties.

Two passport size photographs of both the parties]

Death certificate or divorce decrees whichever is applicable, in case one of the parties had any marriages in the past.

Procedure: (Same as above)

The parties need to file a Notice of Intended Marriage in the specified form to the Marriage Registrar of the district in which at least one of the parties to the marriage has resided for a period of not less than 30 days immediately preceding the date on which such notice is given.

The notice is then published/put-up by the Registrar of Marriage inviting objections, if any.

After the expiration of 30 days from the date on which notice of intended marriage has been published, the marriage may be solemnized unless it has been objected by any person.

The marriage may be solemnized at the specified Marriage Office.

Both parties along with three witnesses are required to be present on the date of registration/Solemnization.

Is court marriage of an Indian and a Foreign National allowed? What is the eligibility criteria? What are the documents required? What is the procedure?

A marriage between parties one of whom at least is a citizen of India may be solemnized under Special Marriage Act, in India before a Marriage Registrar in India or a Marriage Officer in a foreign country.

Eligibility criteria:

At least one of the parties should be an Indian citizen.

The bride groom must be 21 years of age; the bride must be 18 years of age.

Neither party has a spouse living,

Neither party is an idiot or a lunatic,

The parties are not within the degrees of prohibited relationship

Each party involved should not have any other subsisting valid marriage.

Documents Required:

Application form duly signed by both the parties.

Documentary evidence of the date of birth of parties.

Copy of Passport of both the parties with valid Visa.

Residential Proof of both the parties.

Documentary evidence regarding stay at district in India of one of the parties for more than 30 days (Proof of stay or report from the concerned SHO).

N.O.C. or Marital Status certificate from the concerned embassy or Consulate in India by a foreigner partner.

Death certificate or divorce decree whichever is applicable, in case one of the parties had any marriages in the past.

Procedure:

The parties to the marriage shall give notice in writing in the form specified, to the Marriage Officer of the district in which at least one of the parties to the marriage has resided for a period of not less than 30 days immediately preceding the date on which such notice is given, and the notice shall state that the party has so resided.

All the documents are verified at the Office of Marriage Registrar.

The law of other nation shall not be in conflict with Indian laws.

The notice is then published inviting objection to the marriage, if any.

If no objection is made, then, on the expiry of the notice publishing period, the marriage may be solemnized.

The marriage shall be solemnized in the presence of at least three witnesses.

Further the Marriage Certificate is entered and is granted by the Marriage Registrar.

Cluster of villages.

This post was authored by Karthik Rai and proofread by Jwalika Balaji, students of the National Law School of India University, Bangalore.

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